In just over 6 months time the Tour de France comes to Leeds. Last weekend and a little ahead of schedule two Tynedale Harriers embarked on their own Tour of Yorkshire. Adam Pratt and Jonny Currie travelled to the impressive EIS indoor arena in Sheffield on Saturday November 16th for the first Northern Indoor Open meeting of the season. A busy programme saw several hundred competitors competing over unusual distances such as 150m, 600m, 1000m and 2000m. Adam and Jonny opted for the 1000m event comprising 5 laps of the tightly banked 200m track and were both seeded in the ‘A’ race. Jonny was drawn on the inside kerb and opted to lead in the early stages as the field strung itself out. Averaging a little over 30 seconds per lap he finished a close 4th in a new pb of 2m 34.42s. Adam struggled a little for speed in the opening stages but finished only just outside his best in 2m 47.15s.
After the day’s exertions the boys headed north for an overnight stop near Wakefield in preparation for the ‘Abbey Dash’ the following morning. The dash is a 10k charity race organised by Age UK starting and finishing in the centre of Leeds. As well as a field of over 12000 charity runners the event plays host to an elite race and regularly attracts the highest calibre athletes from around the country. This year was no exception and 14 runners finished inside the magic 30 minute mark. The flat switchback course lends itself to quick times and cool, still conditions also helped the two Tynedale Harriers to personal bests. First home was Jonny in 220th position overall in a time of 34m 25s which placed him 9th in the under20 category closely followed by Adam in 296th and 35m 29s.
For any track and field athletes looking for a winter competition then the indoor arenas at Sheffield and now Glasgow have much to offer. If a fast, flat and accurate 10k is more you’re bag then you could do a lot worse than sign up for next years Abbey Dash. The more committed (or indecisive) of you can emulate Adam and Jonny and make a weekend of it!
There are 2 short videos of the weekend’s events on youtube.
Northern Indoor Open here
Abbey Dash 10k here